Tucked between the Rhine and the secluded Heimbach valley is the village of Niederheimbach. This is where the Heimbach stream joins the Rhine, having
passed the village of Oberheimbach higher up. Heimburg Castle and the village’s
fortifications offered protection against the neighbouring Electoral Palatinate. In the centre of the village and along the Heimbach stream, visitors can still see the remains of the old defence wall.
For centuries, the people of Niederheimbach made a living as boatmen, river pilots and as wine producers. All vessels had to pass the perilous Binger Loch and the pilots turned their intimate knowledge of the river’s rocks and navigable depths into a profitable business. Today’s Rhine steamers pass Niederheimbach by, thus missing the attractive half-timbered buildings in the centre of the village, the old robber barons’ lair Sooneck Castle and Heimburg Castle above the village. Of course, that can’t happen to visitors who choose to walk or cycle along the Rhine taking the land route.